Virginia Firefighters Welcome Nine Babies in 16 Months

Baihly Warfield
Updated: February 28, 2018 06:18 PM

There is a baby boom at the Virginia Fire Department. Over the last 16 months, firefighters' families have welcome nine new babies. 

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"I will admit, I don't know all the babies' names by memory," Chief Allen Lewis said. 

There are three boys and six girls in the mix, including a set of twins. 

"I really think we should start a daycare center," the chief joked. 

It was also the first time a female firefighter had a baby. 

"We're very, very happy for her and everyone else that has had children here," Lewis said. 

At the department's annual awards dinner last Friday, all but one of the babies was there to snap a "family" photo. It's been busy, but Chief Lewis said everyone has been able to take the time off they needed. 

"Almost everyone's back to work," he said. "Fortunately, they were staggered. They did not all come at once. So that helped quite a bit."

The only ones not pictured in the photo are firefighter and paramedic Ross Gramling and his daughter Elise. She was sick that day. 

"It'll be seven months on the third," Gramling said. "We had our first little girl who is both sides of the family's first grandchild as well."

The new dad said he's gotten a little parenting advice from the others. 

"I think now that we're all kind of in the same age group and have children that are very similar in age, we have a lot more in common in personal life than we ever did before," Gramling said. 

Lewis said there is a family tradition within the Virginia Fire Department, and they are hoping that may continue on with this generation of babies. 

"We have little onesie outfits that say Virginia Fire on them already," Lewis said. "So yes, we're grooming them and recruiting them for another potential hire in 18 years."

VFD is also looking to expand its family in another way. Lewis is looking for one firefighter/paramedic and six EMT or paramedics. Experience with babies is not required. 


Baihly Warfield

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